First-year medical students from the University of Manitoba’s (U of M) Max Rady College of Medicine (Rady Faculty of Health Sciences) participated in “Rural Week” within Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) region this year. Rural Week initially covered the period from May 25-May 28, however this year, some sites within PMH hosted students into the first week of June.
Rural Week— coordinated annually by the Department of Family Medicine, Shared Health (Manitoba HealthCare Providers Network) and rural regional health authorities —provides medical students with the opportunity to gain first-hand experience of how rural and northern Manitoba medical practices function. It also promotes the many benefits of working and living in a rural/northern Manitoba area.
Prairie Mountain Health (PMH) was again an active partner throughout the initiative— with 35 medical students assigned to 11 communities. Communities that participated this year included Brandon, Dauphin, Hamiota, Killarney, Neepawa, Russell, Souris, Ste. Rose, Swan River, Treherne and Virden.
Students took part in a variety of rural physician practices, and in most cases, tagged along with a ‘doc’ to see how their days unfolded. As a result of the COVID 19 pandemic, some aspects of the initiative were scaled back most notably, local events or activities that would have been held to informally introduce medical students to individual communities. However, the students received some assignments that allowed them to explore communities on their own.
“We really appreciated the opportunity to highlight medical facilities, sites and communities within the health region in the hopes that some of the medical students eventually select to live and work in rural Manitoba,” stated Michelle McKay, Director of Health Services, Primary Care.
McKay adds that PMH sincerely thanks and appreciates all the efforts of the physician preceptors, health-care professionals and volunteers to ensure the ongoing success of Rural Week.
Pictured L-R: Liam Grenier, Dr. Hani Daoud, Adam Kinnear. Students spent time at both the Health Centre and Virden Medical Clinic